Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Counting Wins and Losses.

Counting Wins and Losses

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated October 15, 2015)

4

Graham has, in Excel, created a matrix of player names for his league. Cells B2:H2 contain the names of the players, as do cells A3:A9. At each intersection in the matrix, Graham places a "W" or "L" to indicate whether the match-up resulted in a win or loss for the player in each row. If a player plays another person more than once, then a cell contains a "W" or "L" for each game. Graham was wondering what formula could be used, starting in column I, to indicate the number or wins and losses for each player.

There are a number of ways you can get the desired information. One is to use this type of formula:

=LEN(SUBSTITUTE(B3&C3&D3&E3&F3&G3&H3,"L",""))

This formula calculates the number of non-L characters in row 3—in other words, the number of wins. It does this by concatenating the contents of B3:H3, and then using the SUBSTITUTE function to remove all the Ls. This leaves the Ws, which are counted by the LEN function. You could also use the CONCATENATE function, in the following manner, for the same result:

=LEN(SUBSTITUTE(CONCATENATE(B3,C3,D3,E3,F3,G3,H3),"L",""))

To calculate the number of losses, simply replace "L" in each formula with "W".

You can also use an array formula, which allows you to specify a range of cells to examine, rather than needing to specify every single cell:

=SUM(LEN(SUBSTITUTE(B3:H3, "L","")))

This array formula, entered by pressing Shift+Ctrl+Enter, returns the number of wins (W characters) in the range B3:H3.

Finally, you can use a user-defined function to return the occurrences of a specific character within a given range. The following macro will do the trick:

Function CharNums(r, chr) As Integer
    Dim c As Range
    Dim strX As String
    Dim J As Integer

    Application.Volatile
    CharNums = 0
    For Each c In r.Cells
        strX = c.Value
        For J = 1 To Len(strX)
            If Mid(strX, J, 1) = chr Then CharNums = CharNums + 1
        Next J
    Next c
End Function

To use the function, you would us a formula like this in your worksheet:

=CharNums(B3:H3;"W")

The function returns the number of uppercase W characters in the range. All other characters (including lowercase w characters) are ignored. To count losses, simply substitute L for W in the formula.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3049) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Counting Wins and Losses.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Recovering Password-Protected Documents

Got a locked document you just need to get into? It may be quite easy (or next to impossible) using the ideas in this tip.

Discover More

Understanding Sections

Sections are handy if you want to subdivide a document so you can apply different document formatting to those subdivisions. ...

Discover More

RGB Values for Automatic Colors

When you create a chart, Excel automatically assigns different colors to the various data series in the chart. At some point ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Character Replacement in Simple Formulas

Do you see some small rectangular boxes appearing in your formula results? It could be because Excel is substituting that box ...

Discover More

Returning Zero when a Referenced Cell is Blank

Reference a cell in a macro, and if that cell is blank Excel normally equates that to a zero value. What if you don't want ...

Discover More

Automatically Numbering Rows

Adding row numbers to a column of your worksheet is easy; you just need to use a formula to do it. Here's a quick look at a ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is five less than 5?

2016-01-12 14:00:55

Grassland

I have a spreadsheet of football standings, Column A lists team names and columns B-K are weeks 1-10 which can contain either W (win), L (loss), or B (Bye week) for each team. Column L is a Totals column for which I want the records displayed in W-L format (e.g. 5-2 for five wins and two losses, ignoring Bye weeks in tallying obviously). How would I do this with a formula? Thanks in advance!


2015-03-16 21:45:45

hogmr16

I need a formula to calculate wins and loses. I have a column called record. I would like the record to change after every w or l. column e is called result and has either a w or a l in it. column g is called record. I would like record to be 1-0, and to change with every w or l. e3:e29.


2012-04-30 14:00:02

awyatt

The simple COUNTIF formulas by ProClave won't work. Note that the first paragraph of the tip says "If a player plays another person more than once, then a cell contains a "W" or "L" for each game."

This means that a single cell could have multiple Ws and Ls in them. Thus, a cell could have in it "WWW" or "WLWWL" or any other permutation.

If a cell contains ONLY a "W" or an "L", then the shorter COUNTIF formulas would work fine.


2012-04-30 13:53:24

ProClave

WINS:
=COUNTIF(B3:H3,"W")

Losses:
=COUNTIF(B3:H3,"L")


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.